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Philip Purser-Hallard MA DPhil (born Philip Hallard in 1971) is an author and scholar whose interests in science fiction and religion have been expressed both in fiction and non-fiction.

Purser-Hallard received his doctorate in English literature at Oxford University, during which time he was President and Society Poet of the Douglas Adams Society, and a founder member of a student comedy troupe called Cruel and Unusual Punishment. His DPhil thesis, entitled 'The Relationship Between Creator and Creature in Science Fiction', examines how British and American science fiction of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries examine the relationship between humanity and a putative creating deity through stories about the creation of sentient individuals by scientists, working from Mary Shelley's Frankenstein through to recent authors like Bruce Sterling, William Gibson and Dan Simmons. He also has interests in eschatological science fiction, as seen in his first novel, Of the City of the Saved....

Purser-Hallard has given three talks at the liberal Christian Greenbelt festival, all on the intersections of science fiction and religious themes: "Science Fiction as the Bible" and "The Bible as Science Fiction" (2004), and "The Spirituality of Doctor Who" (2005). He writes a regular column on science fiction and faith for Surefish, the ISP and webzine arm of Christian Aid.

Most of his published fiction to date has been set in shared universes with origins in Doctor Who licensed fiction.

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  • "Cybernetic godhead": the relationship between creator and creative in the science fiction of William Gibson, in the journal ManuScript (1999).
  • The Drugs Did Work, an article on Philip K. Dick, in The Guardian (12 August 2006).

Surefish columnsEdit

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